Sinalco

Saw this old sign in Corinth, Mississippi. You can’t find a Sin Alco in the United States these days but apparently it’s still the third most popular soda in Germany.

Both Corinth and Vicksburg, Mississippi have Coca-Cola related museums, and of course Atlanta is all about Coke. It got me wondering if the spread of Coca-Cola was connected to the total devastation of the South in the wake of the Civil War. Recall that Coca-Cola was invented by John Stith Pemberton, a former Confederate officer wounded in the war who was experimenting with increasingly wild home brews in an effort to cure himself of morphine addiction. There were a lot of people around with shattered nerves looking for a tonic. There was a big demand for alternatives to alcohol:

The first successful effort to limit the sale of alcohol was an 1874 law that required anyone wanting to sell alcohol to obtain a license from a majority of the area’s registered voters plus a majority of all women over age fourteen

From the Mississippi Encyclopedia. In law if not in practice Mississippi went dry in 1908. (That’s part of why the river towns on the Arkansas side got so wild).

Strange and haunting to visit these parts of the country that were ruined by defeat in war and an occupying army. When you wonder why Jackson, MS is so messed up it’s worth remembering the city was burnt to the ground not once but twice during the war, nothing standing but a few brick chimneys. Maybe they should have their mess together by now, but it’s only a few generations ago. Irene Triplett was getting a Civil War pension two years ago.

Good slogan for a soda: “You’ll Like It”



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